When the French seized Casablanca in the early 1900s, they turned the historic Moroccan port into a classic of colonial architecture. In the decades since real-estate development and property speculation have reshaped the cityand preservationists are increasingly fretting about what will become of the crumbling French colonial facades, neo-Moorish details and Art Deco hotels.
"We've got to act fast," said Karim Rouissi, vice-president of Casamemoire, an association to protect the city's old buildings. "There are buildings that are in a state of advanced disrepair."
Among the casualties is the famous Piot-Templier building. It was constructed in 1925 by architect Pierre Ancelle and was alongside the Hotel Lincoln. It housed the well-known Templier china shop and upstairs, the famous restaurant Etoile de Marrakech.
Communications Minister Mustapha El Khalfi, has made the banning of gambling advertisements on television a key theme of his project to reform the audiovisual sector. However, after intervention from HM King Mohammed, the regressive measures are in doubt. The new measures were due to take effect as of May 1 but in light of protests, including from within the government, their implementation has been indefinitely postponed.
Daniel Jacobs heads to Agadir beach in Morocco, a long, wide, winter sun favourite.
The long, wide beach is Agadir’s main draw, serviced by good four- and five-star hotels. The city itself is less interesting, but there are beauty spots and historic towns within easy day-trip striking distance.